Turmoil-enomics X

I think we are up to number 10.

Yesterday the Australian markets lost around 1.6%. Overnight Wall St lost 2.4%. But the Australian futures are pointing to a gain on the markets today.

And it seems that the oppositions bluster is having no effect on their poll ratings. The latest Newspoll published in today’s Australian shows that the ALP still show a strong lead in the 2PP – 54-46, but the interesting on is that 65% are satisfied with Rudd’s performance (up from 56%), whereas Turnbull has only improved one point to 51%. And on the better PM question, Rudd leads Turnbull by 59-25.

Here is the link to the Newspoll PDF. And of course, Dennis tries to put his spin on the poll – seeing movement where there is none.

So here is today’s economic thread, keep it clean, keep it civil.

(previous thread now closed)

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52 Responses

  1. I was just posting in the previous one and hit submit when the message “no more comments are being taken” appeared.

    So this continues on from Tom’s last post in the previous thread on this topic.
    ————————————————————————
    I don’t agree Tom. Rudd is not Keating and tries to control the media cycle from the backrooms, which I hate and is another tick in the bad column for me.

    Swan is up to it and is proving it. The dump on Swan has been an opposition and right wing media beat up from day one. Because he hasn’t got the quick smart arse retort or the immediate bullshit reply that Costello always had along with him often bumbling his way along he is an easy target as being incompetent, but so far he has proven himself to being more than up to the job.

    Look at the way he has handled the investment funds fallout, forthright and straight down the line, which is what he has done from the start. I guess so many are used to the ceaseless bullshit that came from Costello and the Howard government they are having troubles cottoning onto someone who mostly tells it like it is. It certainly has Turnbull tied in knots.

    Some good reads in the links below, but first some further enlightenment on the opposition’s and the rabid Right’s beatup on the investment funds freezing assets.

    Turnbull the other day said this was effecting a quarter of the population. Well it is estimated the total amount effected to any great degree is about 190,000 people. Listening to the news and right wing media you would have though all of Australia was in dire straits.

    One of the articles below gives the source, but I believe it turns out that half to just over half the investment managers had frozen their funds well before the Rudd government announced the bank deposit guarantee.

    As I said, the whole thing with terms like “massive destabilisation” are more or less a “massive beatup” rather than a great policy failure.

    http://www.roadtosurfdom.com/2008/10/27/howards-battlers/
    http://larvatusprodeo.net/2008/10/27/were-all-rooned/

  2. Honest opinion? Here’s mine: For some reason I just can’t take to liking Malcolm Turnbull. It may be because of his history as an investment bankers but I suspect it’s because his lust for power seems to be driven more by his very dominant ego and appearance of self- entitlement than from anything else. Yes, he comes across as someone who thinks he’s self- superior and therefore entitled to lead the country.

    Rudd, on the other hand, is someone I think people can trust to do the very best he can. And regardless of the mistakes he may make there’s a sense he’ll be upfront and honest with people. I may disagree with some of the actions he and his government have made but I feel in the long run they will do everything humanly possible to steer us through some very choppy waters. I can’t say I’d have the same amount of trust in Turnbull.

  3. And now we find the doom and gloom is all the fault of AC/DC:

    “Britain is on the verge of recession – right on cue, AC/DC, who have featured in UK charts at every downturn for the last 35 years, return”

  4. Maybe 3500 will be the low point of our market. It seems that panic has set in now. I will be looking for bargains in December and January as it seems far too volatile at the moment with what appears to be long term investors sitting on the sidelines given the wild swings.

  5. Shane

    My advice would be for investors who lack the motivation or ability to pick stocks to consider placing money in an index fund at around the 3,500 mark and just let it follow the fortunes of the market for the next 10 -15 -20years. The chances of losing anything are remote and the prospect of achieving a decent return to enjoy in their later years is very good.

    And if the market falls further than 3,500 pump more cash into the fund.

  6. Adrian, Swan does not have to be a smart arse like Costello, or Keating for that matter. He only has to have the intelligence and thoroughness of Dawkins. Now there was a Treasurer with ambition, and intelligence as good as any.

    Swan is a bumbler; he stumbles with sentences and fumbles subject matter. I find it difficult to watch him, I don’t have confidence that he understands complexity or the ability to exert control.

    He lacks the raw intellect to succeed at the highest level. To succeed as a Treasurer, you cannot simply have a qualification in public service, and experience as a tutor in the same subject. Actual cognitive power is necessary. I don’t think Swan has enough.

    When you compare Swan with Dawkins or Keating, his predecessors as ALP Treasurers, you can understand why I hold that there is a significant decline in the talent pool available to the ALP.

  7. Tom

    I tend to agree but will reserve my final decision for a while yet as this is the wrost crisis a treasurer has experienced in many, many years.

    One of the problems I find with most areas of politics or business these days is the reliance on a degree more than experience. A degree is a piece of paper and is based on historical learnings and theory. There is no substitute for experience in any field. You will find that many of the most successful men or women did not have degrees but were rather shrewd and experienced from their own successes and failures.

  8. “is the reliance on a degree more than experience…”

    I worked in IT for 25 years – the best programmers were those who had trained on the job. The know-it-all degreed ‘programmers’ were best used for making coffee and filing software updates information sheets in their respective folders.

  9. There is something about the Rudd thing I don’t understand.

    Turnbull doesn’t seem to get it either.

    In the long lead up to the election last year everytime Howard attacked Rudd using the usual weapons of choice for pollies in this country, Rudd’s popularity actually rose.

    Turnbull’s similar surprisingly crude, transparent, and opportunistic attacks have been likewise dismissed by an increasingly sophisticated electorate.

    Rudd’s numbers continue to rise in the face of what’s becoming a feverish and increasingly panicky attack from the Liberal front bench.

    I won’t be surprised if Turnbull eventually loses it and (shades of Fraser ’82) tells us we’d better off putting our money under the bed.

  10. Sans

    LOL. I worked in the bank and those with degrees could not even add two figures together without requiring a calculator yet they were qualified teachers who at the time were oversupplied. We all graoned at what the next generation would be like and what skills they would possess.

  11. Agree re degree and experience.

    I graduated when I was 45 – the degree opened doors for me as a consultant but it was my work experience (including trade, manager and ADF) that kept me there…especially with the big miners (companies I mean 🙂 )

  12. First. Is it a coincidence that on top of the US$700 billion bailout failure (more below) and McCain doing dismally in the polls, the US attacks Syria .

    Second. So much for the US$700 billion going to Main St as the last US$300 billion is dolled out to nine failed banks it turns out the publicly gifted money is not being used by the financial institutions as intended, as in the banks and institutions lending to each other and stimulating money circulation again, but by these entities using the money to position themselves for takeovers and buyouts, thus propping up their value to gain the maximum amount of money for the executives of the companies, but using the public money to do so. The banks have also gotten large tax breaks under the deal and are positioning themselves to make them permanent.

    These institutions through Benanke are now asking for two trillion US dollars, yep you heard right, two trillion, and I bet not a single person on Main St. will see a cent of that if the US government gives it to the banks, brokers and investment houses, but there will be a lot of very happy and very rich executives in America.

    And Bush wants to deregulate even further, which is why he’s fighting the G20 summit and didn’t want it?

  13. I just love the way the “Left” are shifting the focus of this debate and there is a perfect example of what drives my anger towards what I call the “New Left”. I have never yet said that there should be any guarantee on deposits in Cash Management Trusts or Mortgage Funds. I believe the opposite. I have not seen Turnbull or any sensible commentator call for that either. (If someone can show me where they have, I’ll happily elevate my dickhead to an “effing dickhead”). What I have said is that an uncapped deposit guarantee has created (yes) “massive destabilisation” of the financial system in this country, it was unnecessary, and the consequences of the decision were not properly thought through. That self interested financial institutions are seeking their own guarantee changes nothing. They shouldn’t get it. The government cannot possibly give such a guarantee without the sort of regulatory controls that APRA provides. My position is that the guarantee should be capped at a level where there is not such an incentive for so much money to flow from one area of the market to another. I don’t have the expertise to determine what that level is exactly, 100k, 250k, are figures that better experts than I are suggesting.

    For his many faults, the effect of Keating’s reforms led to many many average working Australians sharing in and enjoying the fruits of the prosperity afforded by particularly the Australian stockmarket. For many Australians, this was through the funds management industry, both within and outside of superannuation, as these people hadn’t the knowledge or confidence to invest directly. These people are not greedy. They are/were simply doing what they can to provide a better life for themselves and their families. You can kick the institutions as much as you like, they mostly deserve it, but to give such an advantage to the banks over these financial institutions kicks not just them, but the many many ordinary Australians who have invested money through them in good faith. There are a number of risks in investment. Economic (market) risk is the main one. Political risk is another. Until a couple of weeks ago, we were dealing with the fallout of market failure. Now we have to add to that political failure. Investors could reasonably anticipate the first. They could not reasonably anticipate the second.

    Rudd and Swan f**ked up. Big time. They call it an “unintended consequence”. The question is was it “reasonably forseeable”? Yes it was. All I am asking is that they go back to that day, and change the decision. Rudd has another 3 years to recover. Just put the Australian people first.

  14. It amazes me of just how deaf dumb and blind the world became to the troubles brewing in the US financial system

    Lets backtrack to 2001 in the US, one scandal after another broke as some of the largest companies in the world either went close to the edge or over. And why? Well I think William Flannagan, former writer and editor for Forbes, The Wall Street Journal, and author of ‘Dirty Rotten CEOS ‘How Business Leaders Are Fleecing America’ message should have rung alarm bells with investors and governments the world over, but nobody seemed to take much notice. In 2003 Flannagan warned:

    ‘Wall Street never likes to dwell on its fiascos. When its miscreants are caught, they usually admit nothing, yet promise never to do it again. They pay some fines, lop off a few heads, then everyone gets back to business as usual.

    But the latest corporate scandals have created too much carnage to allow a quick return to normalcy. Tens of millions of investors were badly burned; trillions of dollars evaporated; hundreds of thousands of jobs vanished. Not since 1929 have Americans had their faith in corporate America rocked so severely. Don’t expect them to flock back into the stock market any time soon.

    It wasn’t just a market cycle that caused all this damage. It wasn’t the popping of the dot.com bubble. It wasn’t the slowing global economy. It was the cupidity and stupidity of CEOs who were out to make themselves billionaires. Screw everyone else, from stockholders to employees to regulators, the business leaders seemed to be saying.

    Like dispatches from the front, the press reports of the corporate scandals were filled with grim numbers as one major corporation after another fell dead or was gravely wounded. Enron. Arthur Andersen. Global Crossing. WorldCom. AOL Time Warner. Tyco. Adelphia. Qwest. Even Citigroup, the largest bank in the world. For months we were bombarded with stories of fraud and recklessness that involved bankers, directors, brokers, analysts, consultants, politicians, and lawyers, as well as the chief executives themselves.

    It became hard to tell the players without a scorecard. (The Forbes List of Highest Paid CEOs could have served as one, however.) In the end, it all became a blur for many readers and investors. Newspapers, magazines, and TV hammered the scandals until they became as depressing as opening up your 401(k) statement. Readers welcomed the comic relief of Tyco’s Dennis Kozlowski and his $6,000 shower curtain, Adelphia’s John Rigas and his $13 million private golf course, and the laid-off Women of Enron posing in Playboy to pay the rent.

    But the evil these men did shouldn’t be simply swept into history’s dustbin (the one marked “recycle”) and forgotten until the next time. We need to view slow-motion replays of some of the ugliest moments in American capitalism so that they won’t be repeated.

    If you go beyond the headlines, it becomes clear that what happened was, sadly, inevitable. The outrageous award of stock options was the common denominator in all of these grim tales. Wave enough money in the faces of enough CEOs, and too many of them will do anything to get it. Couple that with puppet boards of directors, greedy moneylenders, ignorant investors, and sleepy regulators—and presto! you have the critical mass for disaster.

    What can you do as a hapless investor? Read this book, remember its lessons, and in the words of the Albert Finney character in Saturday and Sunday Morning, “Don’t let the bastards grind you down.” You have stockholder rights; use them. You have brains; think before you invest. You have votes; don’t waste them. You should be mad as hell, not only because most of these dirty rotten CEOs will get away with what they did. They robbed you blind. Don’t take it anymore. Stop them before they steal again.”

  15. # 6. Tom of Melbourne | October 28, 2008 at 9:27 am

    When you compare Swan with Dawkins or Keating, his predecessors as ALP Treasurers, you can understand why I hold that there is a significant decline in the talent pool available to the ALP.

    Can’t agree with that at all, so we’ll have to agree to disagree. I believe at the moment the ALP have a fair bit of talent with some duds, but overall a fairly competent group. I put Swan up there as well. He may not be a Keating or Dawkins, but in his bumbling way he has acquitted himself well and is growing into the job. His change from the early days of being easily out manoeuvred in parliament by anyone on the opposition bench to now where he outmatches Turnbull at nearly every turn and has rendered Bishop irrelevant is significant. Plus if you were to take bumbling as a measure of competence then Howard should never have made it to PM let alone to opposition leader.

    If you want to see a real significant decline in talent then look no further than the previous government ministers. The moment Howard went they all crumbled and were shown up as being nothing more than lots of bravado and magniloquence without any substance or real talent.

    I think you are perceiving a lack of talent in the current government because they are not in your face in every news headline and media article making grandiose statements like the previous government did. Most of Rudd’s ministers seem to be just quietly getting on with it, which is they way I like my government to be.

  16. Just before anyone gets the idea of claiming the Rudd Government are responsible for ruining the country, I’d like to say ‘I hope you find human excrement in your ice-cream’

    “The federal government will not meet its infrastructure, health and education fund commitments next year, Future Fund chairman David Murray says.

    The government announced in the May budget plans to set up a $20 billion infrastructure fund, an $11 billion education investment fund and a $10 billion health fund.

    Mr Murray said the government’s funding commitments would be affected by the impact of the global financial crisis on budget surpluses.

    The government had initially expected a 2008/09 budget surplus of $21.7 billion.

    It has since spent $10.4 billion of the surplus on its financial security package.

    “On a cyclical basis, there’s no way those sorts of surpluses will be available to any Australian government,” Mr Murray told ABC radio.

    “It will be far more difficult to manage the budget than it has been.”

    Mr Murray said the government would have a better idea of its surplus when the mid-year economic outlook was released next month.”

  17. But…but…but Adrian, don’t you know that Malcum Turnbull is the Liberal Party now…

    all those Howard-era cronies are now just mumbling backbenchers….collecting exhorbitant salaries in return for very little output and just quietly biding their time until they can retire on a generous Super scheme…

    *sigh*

  18. reb… surely you mean that they are now just mumbling nodding backbenchers

  19. Over the years I’ve come to decide that formal degree level qualifications mean very little.

    That’s not to say that qualifications are unnecessary, but I think TB has it about right. It is best to get a tertiary education when it can be grounded in plenty of real world experience. Perhaps though, a little earlier than 45 for most. I am in favour of specialised post graduate study, I think this is where a lot of real development of intelligent, original ideas can occur.

    The critical ingredient for success is the ability to have good ideas, be passionate about them, and have the ability to articulate them in a manner that gets people aligned. This gets the ideas implemented.

    So how does Swan measure up on that type of criteria? Not at all well.

    Adrian, this ministry simply does not measure up to those of previous ALP governments. The first Hawke ministry included Keating, Button, Young, Willis, Walsh, Hayden, Ryan, Evans, Dawkins, Beazley, Blewett, Brown, Jones and others. Where are the current counterparts?

    Keating’s first also had plenty of talent including many of the above and Crean & Griffiths. But by then the factions did start to allocate the spoils of office, and pushed a few dud factional powerbrokers into the ministry. The beginning of the end.

    Julia Bishop on the other hand… I wouldn’t have her do the conveyancing on a garden shed. Similar for the rest of the frontbench. Turnbull is fair, I’ve always had a bit of time for him. Anyone that has shared a partnership with people by the name Wran & Whitlam must have a fair pedigree, even if a little politically misdirected.

  20. Indeed joni! Especially Joe Hockey. What a pathetic excuse of a man…

  21. Tom of Melbourne:

    “The critical ingredient for success is the ability to have good ideas, be passionate about them, and have the ability to articulate them in a manner that gets people aligned. This gets the ideas implemented.”

    Ah, I get it. You’re talking about Helen Coonan……?

  22. Tom of Melbourne

    I agree in having good ideas, be passionate and articulate them. Problem is many of those with degrees seem unable to implement their ideas or do some hard yakka themselves preferring to tell everyone else what to do from an office instead of the coal face.

    They also need to listen to objections instead of demanding “yes” men around them who report nothing but rosy pictures while the business and staff morale tumble.

  23. Just sitting here doing some calculations. From what I can see, the ASX200 hit a high of over 6500 last year.Yesterday there was a drop of 60.2 points which was 1.56%. If we had the same drop when the market was at the high of over 6500 – the percentage drop would have been 0.93%.

    So – is it better to look at the percentage drop or the points drop?

  24. Tom

    The critical ingredient for success is the ability to have good ideas, be passionate about them, and have the ability to articulate them in a manner that gets people aligned. This gets the ideas implemented.

    So how does Swan measure up on that type of criteria? Not at all well.

    Again I have to disagree as does most of those polled who say he is doing a good job economically and achieving the things you mention. It appears to me so far Swan has gotten his ideas implemented and the only ones not aligning (after first aligning and then changing their alignment) are the opposition and right wing commentators, and in their case it doesn’t matter what good ideas Swan has, how passionate he is about them and how articulately he puts them across, he will still be a failure.

    Adrian, this ministry simply does not measure up to those of previous ALP governments. The first Hawke ministry included Keating, Button, Young, Willis, Walsh, Hayden, Ryan, Evans, Dawkins, Beazley, Blewett, Brown, Jones and others. Where are the current counterparts?

    Oh come on Tom that is totally unfair and you know it. That’s like trying to compare a past sporting team with a current one. The comparison’s are so subjective and influenced by the happenings of the time they always lead to widely dispersed and divisive views, and in every case there are stand outs and failures within all the teams.

    Will you admit there are some ministers in the current ALP who are above their Hawke/Keating counterparts.

    I’m not saying Swan is a great treasurer and there is no way he will ever go down in history as one, but he is doing the job and is nowhere near as bad as the right wing are trying to paint him as. Swan is not being a Costello and hoping that by saying you are a great Treasurer often enough, whilst doing little to prove it, will cement your greatness in history as long there is not too much scrutiny by the historians and the history comes from the Shanahans, Milnes and Ackermans of the day.

  25. 25. joni | October 28, 2008 at 12:39 pm
    Poor Dennis is getting a pounding over at his blog:

    http://www.theaustralian.news.com.au/story/0,25197,24562165-17301,00.html

    Including from you. I don’t read him much but I didn’t think there was much offensive in that article. I for one will be surprised if the polls say the same thing in a month.

    Joni: yeah – Dennis always tries to spin it for the coalition, it all stems back to the blog-wars last year. It’s fun to keep on his case.

  26. joni

    …and the poor delusional wingnuts, they never cease to amaze me. One seriously states the polls are taken in safe Labor areas and the real measure is newspaper opinion/comment pieces, which according to her are showing a real increase of dissatisfaction with Rudd and Swan.

    There you have it. Gallup, Newpoll, Nielson, Essential and the others might as well shut shop. Possum, William Bowe and the other psephologists instead of compiling all your data and publishing your wonderful graphs using the official poll agencies, just go through the newspaper opinion pieces, TV and radio phone and SMS polls and you will get the true state of the nation.

    There is one small problem, if this were the case then according to the newspaper opinions and comments leading up to the last election Howard should have won it in a landslide, yet all the official polling agencies had Rudd heading for victory for 12 months or so.

  27. Adrian, I think previous ALP governments had people with powerful intelligence. The current one has much less of this, in my judgment. I’d prefer more intelligence in politicians than less, other things being equal.

    In selecting executives for large public companies, the process includes testing for inductive critical, verbal and numerical reasoning. Other capabilities are often also tested.

    I’d like our political candidates to participate in this type of process. Make the details public. What we observe is a lot of the verbal reasoning, and most would get good results for this. We don’t get the full picture on whether they actually have the cognitive power to do the job we expect of them.

    Combine a decent level of intelligence with some values we can respect, we might start to get some decent politicians, rather than recycled factional warlords and union hacks!

  28. Why did I click on Joni’s link and read some of the comments; time for a shower and delousing.

    joni: sorry – but least it’s better than reading (H)Akerman.

  29. Tom of Melbourne

    “In selecting executives for large public companies, the process includes testing for inductive critical, verbal and numerical reasoning. Other capabilities are often also tested.”

    So thats the problem with all of these executive losers in public companies. I also maintain a Baboon can sack staff and increase profits. A true leader leads by example and builds his troops into a team, not individualise each one of them into a competition with each other which is the way of major corporations these days.

    Too many people are now being tested by some of the most ludicrous systems I have ever come accross. Mostly psychological tests and questions seeking what a profile is like. Some of the ones I have completed have had over 300 of the most ridiculous questions with the most ridiculous multiple choices.

    I want a politician to have common sense not the ability to psychoanalyse things, the rest comes with experience and hands on.

  30. Shane, I think you might misunderstand. I’m not suggesting the psychometric testing etc. I think organisations need to be made up of a cross section of people. Some cooperative, others questioning, that’s how improvement in an organisation usually occurs.

    I’m advocating testing for intelligence, cognitive power.

    The simple fact is that (all else being equal) I’d prefer our political leaders to be at the smarter end of the intelligence scale rather than at the other end (I think we have too many of ordinary capability).

    If we had the opportunity to identify whether they are above or below average intelligence, many of them wouldn’t get preselected in the first place. Parliament would stop being the sinecure for suburban lawyers and retired farmers on one hand and tired union hacks and factional warlords on the other.

    And another thing – our politicians are usually articulate BS artists. Generally, they aren’t clever, they’re only cunning. I’d prefer to have clever people leading us, rather than cunning opportunists.

    We’ll never get anywhere while the parliament is full of cunning, opportunistic, articulate, BS artists!!!!!!!!!!!!

  31. a cunning lunguist, one might say Tom…

  32. If you find that Utopia Tom then holler as I’ll be one of the first there.

    The moment you did anything like that you would hear the flutter of a Bogon moth in the empty chamber of parliament on a full sitting day.

    Politicians bullshit, they have always bullshitted ever since the first caveman put up his hand to be the leader of the cave. Most people in the world, apart from a sizable chunk of the American population, take their politicians with a good healthy dose of cynicism and can very easily cut the chaff out the bull and get to the wheat.

    There is a bullshit limit that people will take and Howard is the perfect example of going over that limit, so there is in place a mechanism to get rid of the pollies who overplay the bull and bring in another bull artist to see how far they will go before being turfed out. What you seek Tom is a complete change to human nature and I don’t think that will happen in our lifetimes or that of our kids. It would be the same as asking the heads of totally deregulated financial institutions to be responsible with the billions under their control.

  33. And people wonder why so many of us average Joes get the shits.

    http://www.theaustralian.news.com.au/story/0,25197,24561203-643,00.html

  34. Tom,

    I understand and respect your point, but I think that it is a very elitist POV. Intelligence (IMHO) is just problem solving, and I (and I think the majority of posters here would be the same) am very good at problem solving, and therefore score high on IQ tests.

    But get me to make something with my hands or to create a work of art and I fail dismally.

    I actually think that we need a cross section of people (like lawyers, farmers, bank managers, teachers, cartpenters, policemen etc etc etc) in our parliaments so that we do have a cross section of opinion.

    Just because someone is not “bright” should not exclude them from being a politician.

    But I do see the problems in that. Because we have an intrusive media, we expect, nay demand that our politicians are well spoken, articulate and “intelligent”.

    So I think that people like Heffernan, Hanson and Latham are actually a bonus to our democracy – not a deficit.

    (sorry if this reply is a bit disjointed – too many interruptions in trying to write it)

    joni: well spoken and articulate eh? The Rex Mossop Award of the day goes to myself and me.

  35. Joni:

    “Just because someone is not “bright” should not exclude them from being a politician.”

    It seems to have worked so far.

  36. Tom

    I agree with your comments, however until Politicians once again look to the future with forward planning in all areas including infrastructure it will never happen.

    Politicians are cunning because they only look to the next election with vote buying policies and budget surpluses at all costs.

    I do however have to admit that Keating did have some foresight as he implemented the superannuation levy which comprised salary sacrifies with each pay rise each year. Although it is in the doldrums at the moment the superannuation levy will be a long sighted benefit to the nation despite at the time, the hollerings of ruination by businesses.

  37. Don’t you get tired of the approach of “that’s Utopia”?

    I just want reasonably clever, well motivated people representing us.

    I propose putting pressure on politicians and political parties to perform the way we prefer (like the alliteration?). The slogan is “P OFF”.

    Perhaps joni and stuntreb will suggest a variation of the slogan.

  38. Our guidelines for the pollies you say Tom?

    Factual Undertakings Canvassed Keeping Errant Rantings Supresseed.

  39. LOL Tom…. I read 38 again and again until I finally understood your point.

  40. 38. Tom of Melbourne | October 28, 2008 at 3:38 pm

    Don’t you get tired of the approach of “that’s Utopia”?

    I just want reasonably clever, well motivated people representing us.

    To the first no because what you are proposing is that.

    Just how do you ensure we get reasonably clever and well motivated people representing us?

    The way I see it, human nature being what it is, those that are clever will use that cleverness to be motivated in getting the most out of the system they can and spinning better than their counterparts.

    Isn’t it the cleverest and most motivated to make money in big business that have bought us to the current financial crisis?

    Plus I think you are doing a great disservice to some of the politicians in parliament at the moment by inferring they are not clever, I believe there are some highly intelligent people from all sides in politics at the moment but just as important there are many highly intelligent public servants behind the politicians.

    Don’t forget Howard was always labelled as clever, and it wasn’t as a praise.

  41. Adrian – why would we possibly want anything other than the most idealistic way of running the country? Too often we settle for the best of a bad lot. We compromise on the quality of our representation when we don’t deserve the unsatisfactory compromise on offer.

    Push them harder I reckon. And relentlessly criticise them when they don’t deliver.

    I’ve not met a politician that deserves our sympathy for non performance. Politicians only react to pressure.

  42. Tom

    I agree push them hard and criticise them from both sides just like I do. The only thing is we seem to have placed politicians in the businessman model. They were originally created to be public servants for the common good of all, not CEOs to run parliament and treasury as some shareholder profiteering return model.

  43. I’ve been scheduled a meeting next week with Graham Perrett, member for Moreton…he is a classic example of the opinions of some here but he means well.

    The worst that I’ve had to deal with thus far would have to be Garrett.

  44. Tom not going to totally disagree with the sentiment but it’s idealist.

    Relentlessly criticise them, what a joke, water off a ducks back as they are relentlessly criticised now, both fairly and unfairly. They get criticised so often and so badly, even when they don’t deserve the criticism, criticisms have no meaning anymore. You can blame the media and oppositions for that who changed from attacking policy and bad political decisions to engaging in continuous scatter gun attacks on anything and everything a government does.

    So what do we do to get your ideal politicians and what example do we set when we don’t even expect ideal leaders of business?

    The current crop of politicians are children of the times, just as the leaders of business and the financial vultures are. We will only get a new generation of both pollies and business leaders if we ourselves change and that means a fundamental shift in human nature. Sorry if I don’t hold my breath waiting for that to happen.

    ——————————-
    As and aside Rudd has yet again our manoeuvred Turnbull and called the investment fund managers bluff by saying he will fully guarantee their funds if they come under full regulation. He has set aside $80 million for ARPA to hand the influx of funds managers coming under regulation if they take up the guarantee.

  45. “First. Is it a coincidence that on top of the US$700 billion bailout failure (more below) and McCain doing dismally in the polls, the US attacks Syria .”adrian

    I’ve been dwelling on this parallel myself. How is it that such aggressive violation of sovereignty (especially in light of the crowing from the US towards Russia recently) has been shunted into virtual obscurity in the media cycle?
    Quite a serious, & calculated development IMHO.
    What’s more, this kind of naked global arrogance from the US plays very well for them at home….ie it is their god given right to decide when it is suddenly perfectly acceptable to violate borders as US interests dictate.
    I also read somewhere this morning of a large escalation in attacks across the Pakistani border by CIA predator attack drones, 18 attacks in the last fortnight I think….with only 1 key Al Qaeda target liquidated but multitudes of civilian casualties.

    Fucking idiots!

    Political expedience at play perhaps?

  46. HD

    The thing about this attack on Syria, which shows the political manoeuvre it really was, and bugger the civilian deaths incurred for that political expediency (they are only Arabs after all), is that most of the incursions into Iraq by Al Qaeda and other militants have come from Saudi Arabia, yet the US has not entertained a single incursion there.

    Says it all really.

  47. “…most of the incursions into Iraq by Al Qaeda and other militants have come from Saudi Arabia, yet the US has not entertained a single incursion there.”adrian

    Astute. It would be cynically amusing if it weren’t for the fact that innocent people’s corpses are the byproduct of US mischief.
    The hypocrisy & double standards on display are simply breathtaking in scope.
    Same as it ever was/is I guess.
    And they condemn Syria as part of an Axis of “Evil”!? FFS, evil is very much a relative term.

  48. Careful HD or you’ll be accused of being anti-American. Remember whenever you put shit on the US you must balance that by putting tens time more shit on another Western country, preferably somewhere in Europe and even more preferably France. Don’t forget to add a condemnation of the UN at the end or you can’t be geniune. You must then end by saying you are a pinko, leftist, tyrant loving, gay supporting, baby killing, terrorist hugging, god hating no good human being for criticising America and you are sorry.

  49. The Institutional US has much more to apologise for than I ever will.
    Point taken though, I am worse than the French & lower than dogshit. God damn America! I’m not with ’em so I suppose that neatly pigeonholes me as against ’em & therefore a “terrorist appeaser” & surrender monkey.
    Of course it has nothing to do with having recognised that black & white doesn’t exist in actuality & those who commit attrocities in my name are equally as guilty as those who I’m constantly told are my “enemies”.

  50. Oh come now, HD, we all know that Syria has more WMDs than you could poke a warhead at and they’re responsible for 9/11, aiding and abetting al Qaeda AND the assassination of arch-duke Ferdinand. And I’ll throw in the Russian revolution, the Viking invasions, the murder of Caesar and the crucifixion of Christ. And the last 2 ice ages for good measure. And they’re bloody Muslims into the bargain! QED.
    Invade, I say, it’s our Christian duty and the governor of Alaska supports it so what more proof do you need? Don’t go bleating about the facts, they just cloud the issue. You know I’m right.

  51. The second part of a University of Sydney study on a not insignificant 8,343 Australia workers over five years has just come out.

    You may remember the first part came out late last year and found average non high end workers on AWAs earned considerably less than workers on any other form of employment instrument.

    Howard condemned the study as biased because it is partly funded by unions (of course business union funded studies aren’t biased according to him), but neither he nor business could refute the facts that came out of the study.

    This second part is just as damning.

    Long working hours still dominates, amongst the longest in the OECD. 1 in 5 work 50 hours per week or more, 1 in 3 work 44 hours. Despite all the extra work they did 1 in 3 still struggled. There were other statistically damning results I can’t remember and will have to wait until I can find the study (Google has failed me) or when the AM transcript becomes available. This is why Howard made the greatest mistake of his political career and illustrated just how out of touch he was because at this time he said “You’ve never had it so good”.

    AM had Steven Ciobo the opposition Shadow Minister for Small Business on. He said this was all in the past and WorkChoices is dead, the study was conducted before the financial meltdown so we should be looking at what is happening to workers now and what is going to happen to them.

    The first thing that struck me about his reply was he in no way tried to refute the study and more or less admitted what it reported was correct. He more or less confirmed the Howard government had been screwing workers, the Howard battlers.
    The subject then shifted to the government’s bank guarantee and the frozen managed funds. He launched into a fear and doom statement for all those who have funds frozen at the moment, they are apparently all rooned for the rest of their lives and are living on absolutely nothing, destitute and starving because Rudd won’t help them. They should be very afraid of the government and rally against it.

    It was with great relief AM switched to another story.

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